Home Office faces legal cases over Zimbabwean asylum seekers

The Home Office faces a series of legal challenges over its decision to allow Zimbabwean government officials to interview people from the country who are seeking asylum in the UK.

The government was criticised earlier this year for working with the Zimbabwean state to accelerate the removal of asylum seekers after Robert Mugabe was forced from power, despite continuing human rights abuses in the country.

The Guardian


Ethical veganism is a protected belief, rules Employment Tribunal

In what multiple commentators have hailed as a landmark legal case, Norwich Employment Tribunal found that the Claimant’s “ethical veganism” is a philosophical belief and therefore a protected characteristic for the purposes of section 10 of the Equality Act 2010 following a preliminary hearing on 2nd and 3rd January 2020.

The judgment is unlikely to be available for some time, so it is not yet possible to analyse the Tribunal’s reasoning.

UK Human Rights Blog

TalkTalk hacking teenager ‘had his rights breached’

A Co Antrim teenager who was part of the high-profile hacking of telecom giant TalkTalk suffered discrimination by his initial media identification, the Belfast High Court has heard.

His lawyers claimed an unlawful distinction was made between his circumstances and other juvenile crime suspects automatically entitled to anonymity once they are charged.

Belfast Newsletter


Plea for mental health minister in new Stormont executive

There have been calls for a minister dedicated to mental health to be in any new Stormont executive.

It follows the deaths of a number of people by suicide - including an 11-year-old boy- over the Christmas and New Year period.

BBC News


Current laws 'not working' to tackle Northern Ireland hate crime

Current legislation used to deal with hate crimes in Northern Ireland "is not working in any satisfactory way," according to a judge.

Desmond Marrinan, who is midway through a year-long review, was speaking as he launched a public consultation aimed at improving things.

According to PSNI figures, eight hate crime incidents are reported each day.

Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK which does not have specific hate crime laws.

BBC News

Baroness Massey: Government must commit to the UN's recommendations on children's rights

Ahead of the UN committee on the Rights of the Child inspection next year, we must improve child mental health services, services for children seeking asylum, child homelessness, and the treatment of children in trouble with the law, writes Baroness Massey.

Politics Home


One in four young people with mental health referral 'rejected'

One in four children and young people referred to mental health services in England last year were not accepted for treatment, according to data, raising concerns that many are still failing to get vital support at an early stage.

Research by the Education Policy Institute (EPI) estimated that more than 130,000 of those referred to specialist services in 2018-19 were “rejected”, among them young people who have self-harmed, suffered eating disorders and experienced abuse.

The Guardian


Call for law change over increase in homophobic hate crimes in London

Homophobic hate crimes in London have increased by 55% in five years, prompting calls for changes to the law.

Latest figures show there were 3,111 hate crimes based on sexual orientation in the 12 months up to October.

BBC News


More than 100,000 children in London without secure immigration status, research finds

More than 100,000 children in London do not have secure immigration status despite more than half of them having been born in the UK, new research shows.

Sadiq Khan warned another Windrush-style scandal could be on the horizon after a study he commissioned found that that tens of thousands of youngsters in the capital were at risk of being unable to access higher education, open bank accounts, or secure housing or employment.

The Independent


MPs vote to drop child refugee protections from Brexit bill

The Commons has rejected proposals to keep protections for child refugees in the redrafted EU withdrawal agreement bill, triggering dismay from campaigners.

The Guardian